The Wrangler

Is Coco A Rip-Off of The Book of Life?

Many+fans+are+claiming+that+Pixar%E2%80%99s+%E2%80%98Coco%E2%80%99+%28right%29+is+a+blatant+rip-off+of+20th+Century+Fox%E2%80%99s+%E2%80%98The+Book+of+Life%E2%80%99+%28left%29.
Many fans are claiming that Pixar’s ‘Coco’ (right) is a blatant rip-off of 20th Century Fox’s ‘The Book of Life’ (left).

Many fans are claiming that Pixar’s ‘Coco’ (right) is a blatant rip-off of 20th Century Fox’s ‘The Book of Life’ (left).

Diedre Howerton

Diedre Howerton

Many fans are claiming that Pixar’s ‘Coco’ (right) is a blatant rip-off of 20th Century Fox’s ‘The Book of Life’ (left).

Gabby McCutchan, Photojournalist

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Word about Pixar’s new film Coco seems to be the only relevant topic on the internet as of current. For the first time in Pixar’s history, the lead is a person of color, which had already sparked the interest of many. It’s a musical animation, taking place in Mexico on the Day of the Dead. Even with just this small bit of information, fans were already beginning to notice the resemblance to 20th Century Fox’s The Book of Life, which hit theaters in 2014.

For starters, both protagonists of the story (Manolo in The Book of Life and Miguel in Coco) come from very uncompromising families, who insist on ‘carrying out’ the family traditions. For Miguel, it’s shoemaking. For Manolo, it’s bullfighting. Regardless, throughout the seperate movies both leads are desperate to pursue a career in making music, and will do anything it takes to achieve this goal. While Manolo’s goal is to win over the girl of his dreams by serenading her with his music, Miguel simply wants to follow his dreams of making music.

Not to mention the uncanny resemblance between the land of the dead in both of the movies, which happen to be extremely abstract and vibrant, winding around in strange places and connecting to various places.They’re supposed to create that “awe” factor that leaves your jaw dropped, but for Coco, all that was left was a memory of The Book of Life. Russell Lang (10) says, “One of the similarities that I thought was particularly upsetting was how closely the land of the dead in Coco looked compared to The Book of Life. It would have been better if Pixar could have just been more original instead of obviously coping The Book of Life’s theme.”  Coco’s animation of the land of the dead was truly breathtaking, but very unoriginal, and the inspirations used for the scenery could very easily been guessed.

The Book of Life (2014)

Coco (2017)

As for the plot of the movies themselves, I wasn’t able to find too many similarities.The Book of Life tells the tale of two young men fighting for the love of Maria, the love interest. Manolo dies for Maria, and when he travels to the land of the dead he realizes how small of a window he has to successfully travel back to the land of the living so he can win Maria’s hand. While Coco revolves around the story of a young boy who accidentally steals from the dead, and travels to the land of the dead. There, he must receive a blessing from a family member to, similar to the Book of Life, travel back to the land of the living (in which he also has a very small time frame in order to get back successfully).

After viewing Coco and The Book of Life, it’s easy to pinpoint in The Book of Life where Pixar snatched scenes and settings, slightly twisting them to their liking as to make them their own. While the story of Coco is catchy and entertaining, the amount of times Pixar blatantly took from 20th Century Fox’s animations and timelines just takes away from the movie itself, and all that is left is a bitter remembrance.

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Is Coco A Rip-Off of The Book of Life?